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MIS Systems Thread, Parent Evening Online Booking Systems - Recommendations please in Technical; We are possibly looking at an online booking system for parents evenings that can be used to import a list ...
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    timbo343's Avatar
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    Parent Evening Online Booking Systems - Recommendations please

    We are possibly looking at an online booking system for parents evenings that can be used to import a list of teachers from SIMS.

    I have just had a scout around on the net and see a few which look decent and do pretty much the same thing..

    Parent Evening System - One of Capitas partners - Parents Evening System - Online Parents Evening Software
    Parent Evening Booking System - this seems to be a common one amongst schools - Parents Evening Booking System, Software for Schools by NetMedia
    Parentteacheronline.co.uk - This is apparently used world wide - Parent Teacher Online
    Schoolcomms.com/parentsevening - Parents Evening System | Schoolcomms

    I was wondering if schools on here were using any of the above or if they are using any others.

    Thanks

  2. #2

    GREED's Avatar
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    I have worked with they guys behind ParentsEveningSystem before they are really good and the product is solid.

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    timbo343 (3rd June 2013)

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    We use the room booking part of FREE 3 month trial - Online Room booking, equipment booking, online marking, exam information, parent evening bookings & student lists we did look at the parent's evening package but teachers thought the present system worked ok.

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    timbo343 (3rd June 2013)

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    TASC Insight has an option for parent evening bookings online. Not used yet but we are considering implementing it.

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    timbo343 (3rd June 2013)

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    Built in to SchoolBase so I haven't looked at other products.

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    We use Parenteveningsystem and I can't speak highly enough about the product and the company (I don't work for them, I promise!)

    All the feedback we've had from parents has been extremely positive and they seem to find it very user friendly. Setup is also pretty simple and isn't a huge burden on my time.

    Probably my biggest positive with them though is that their customer service is top notch. They have responded to direct requests for changes to the system itself within days sometimes and any bugbears I had with the system initially have all been sorted quickly.

    Obviously I'm not saying to go with them on my say so, but I would definitely encourage you to get them in for a demo or for a free trial.
    Last edited by Ecclesbury; 4th June 2013 at 01:54 PM.

  10. 2 Thanks to Ecclesbury:

    Schoolcomms (5th June 2013), timbo343 (4th June 2013)

  11. #7
    tombry's Avatar
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    I think your top link and the bottom link are for the same company when you get around to it.

    I set up a trial for our school for Y11 Parents Evening in November and it was glorious - worked perfectly, so perfectly we instantly bought the system (good price).

    I then set up a Year 9 tutor evening, and that went wonderfully as well.

    Then I made a bunch of mistakes setting up a Year 9 Subject evening (Year 10 at the same time), without realizing that all of our teaching groups had changed, which was a godawful mess to clean up (but quite easy really).

    PES now has a tool that pulls from SIMS and will update the online system, which has kept me much more sane.

    Few things to keep in mind:

    Appointments and their breaks have to be the same amount of time, so a 5 minute appointment with a 5 minute break, I understand why, the teachers don't all like it though (for the record we go with no breaks, and count on staff to block out time they are unavailable).

    Teachers will not like it at first, as it puts all the appoinment making power in the hands of parents - so Johnny might book an appointment at 5, and Jimmy at 8, and your teacher is stuck for 3 hours (not true, they can always call and rearrange with parents, but this was the number one complaint from staff).

    Parents will absolutely love it (unless they are computer illiterate and you don't have a safety net set up) - I have only had about 5 complaints regarding the system, 3 of which were because all the appointments were booked, 2 of which were because they didn't want to use a computer to set the appointments - at which point I sent them to our pastoral office ladies, who happily helped them book their appointments.

    On the setup, if you go with parent details as the sign in method, make sure you give parents those details - so many different ways that their names can be in SIMS, and for a few it took a bit to get that figured out - the first time I set it up I used the 8 digit code and mailmerged a letter home to parents, after rebuilding it I used their names, and that was a bit more tenuous.

    From a SLT viewpoint it's great, you can see who has/hasn't booked appointments, make sure that those parents are contacted, and get a much more accurate number of attendees (especially if you make your teachers fill out the register afterwards).

    All-in-all I highly recommend it to all the schools in the area who have younger siblings of our students and have had parents demanding to know why they don't use the system we use.

    and as @Ecclesbury up there states, the customer service is excellent.

  12. 3 Thanks to tombry:

    Schoolcomms (5th June 2013), timbo343 (4th June 2013), vikpaw (12th June 2013)

  13. #8
    timbo343's Avatar
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    We have decided to trail the ParentsEveningSystem which looks very clear and easy to use. Hopefully the staff will like it and the parents will be abel to use it without any problems.

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    We are now using ParentsEveningSystem here, and I cannot complain,

    There is a couple of things to warn you about in advance,

    All the Parents/Guardians of your students need to have parental responsiblity ticked in the contacts within SIMs and they must have a forename there, if not they can not sign up.

    Set the data field as Date of Birth and Make sure you customise your signup screen to say that, as students and parents get confused between registration groups and class groups etc.

    Last thing, your staff will love it, it takes a lot of the paperwork out of the equation, and most parents will like it too (there is always those who will have issues and they will complain about it but they will be the same ones complaining about using paper)

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